Saturday, March 16, 2013

Mini Review: Live Out Loud

Once again, Heather Wardell has given me a fabulous read! Live Out Loud was a great, thought provoking, and emotional novel and I thoroughly enjoyed it.

Here's the synopsis:
Amy's a hobbyist songwriter with big dreams, but not the usual 'making it as a musician' kind. No, Amy wants to honor her late best friend by finally starting the support center for teenage girls they'd dreamed of when they were just girls themselves. She doesn't know where to start, but when one of her songs becomes an overnight internet sensation she sees a quick path to the money she'll need to make the center a reality.
As white-hot pop sensation Misty Will, Amy finds a whole new world opening to her and realizes she loves being on stage holding an audience spellbound. She also loves how her young fans look up to her and draw strength from her songs, but of course they don't know the awful thing she did after her friend died and how badly she could have used a support center herself. She knows, though, and also knows that she simply has to leave her new pop princess identity behind and become Amy the center director as she's dreamed of for eight years.
Doesn't she?
This is the sixth book in Heather's Toronto Series and I really like that this series isn't a typical one. All the books take place in Toronto (or with characters from the city who happen to be on vacation) but the main characters change in each book. What's fun is that sometimes characters from previous novels make brief appearances in following books. For example, the main couple from Stir Until Thoroughly Confused (Mary and Kegan, who I loved) show up Live Out Loud. I was annoyed at myself because I accidentally read this one before book five, A Life That Fits (I think I got confused by the Ls and the fact that I didn't have the list in front of me when I started this one on my Kobo). It doesn't really matter in the long run, but I didn't know if any characters from book five showed up in book six.

This is more of an observation than anything else, but when I was reading this novel, I was sort of picturing Amy as similar to Katy Perry. Perry is also pop-y and appeals to young girls but has a bit of a serious side as well, just as Amy does. Of course, the bright coloured wigs and costumes Amy-as-Misty wears further set the comparison in my head!

Like all of Wardell's novels, Live Out Loud was a balance of sweet and fun, and serious and inspirational. Amy had some tough decisions to make throughout this novel - Who should she sign with? Should she stay with her boyfriend? Should she keep being Misty? I saw this novel as a "follow your heart" kind of story and I really enjoyed it. If you still haven't picked up any of Heather Wardell's books (even after me bugging you to every time I review one of her novels), get to it. She's a great writer who always tells a wonderful story and I can't wait to dive into her next book.

PS In case you're wondering about all the mini reviews you've been seeing (and may continue to see...) - I'm way behind on reviews due to a lack of downtime for writing since I started my internship. I'm getting a TON of reading done on my commute but the reviewing part has fallen by the wayside. I'm hoping to get my act together soon so expect some more reviews in the next little while!

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